Last days of the Marble Arch Mound once branded 'worst thing I've done'

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London's controversial artificial hill branded by one tourist as 'the worst thing she had ever done' is days away from being dismantled.

The £2m Marble Arch Mound boasting grass, shrubs and real trees was commissioned by Conservative Westminster Council as part of a post-Covid revival plan for the West End.

But it was mocked by tourists, temporarily closed shortly after opening and according to one Westminster City Councillor "made us look stupid".

Marble Arch Mound cost £2m to build and visitors were allowed to climb up for free

"Visitors were supposed to pay £6 each but because it was such a disaster the council had to make it free!" said Paul Dimoldenberg, shadow cabinet member for city management.

"It could have paid for CCTV to monitor the drug hotspots and other crime hotspots all over Westminster.

"It could have helped clean up the mounds of rubbish that are dumped on the streets. 

"It’s made us look stupid in the eyes of local people, across the UK and internationally," he added.

Just a day after it opened Westminster Council admitted parts of mound were "not ready for visitors". It was then reopened free of charge.

Despite the problems Councillor Matthew Green, Cabinet Member for Business, insisted the mound had "ultimately achieved what it set out to do" and urged people to enjoy it while they can.

Scaffolding behind the Marble Arch Mound

"We had to have a bold idea that would bring people back and it’s brought people back in spades," Councillor Green said.

"I regret the overspend on the mound but I don’t regret the objectives and what it’s achieved which is bringing 250,000 people back into Oxford Street. 

"If 250,000 people have enjoyed it over the past few months, never say never, but come and visit this weekend because you’ll probably not be able to do so again!" he added.